As statements of purpose go, it’s hard to argue with the above; if “Duke Hater” is written on my tombstone, it’ll give denizens of the 24th century something to mull over (although I’d prefer the more proper “dook” spelling).
Last year somebody told me I was the perfect mouthpiece for hating Koach K’s Klown Kollege because it was obviously visceral. Having been traumatized as a kid by the douchebags of Eastern Iowa, Dook was the adult manifestation of a childhood nightmare, and who better to spurt forth about it? Thing is, I am not the author of the best anti-Dook moment.
That honor belongs to my old Grimes Dorm roommate – and now brother-in-law – Jon Vaden. In the winter of 1986 when we were but teenage freshmen, one of our sophomore friends drove us over to Dook to see Kris Richardson, a girl who had gone to Carolina in the fall, awaiting transfer as a Dookie “J-Frosh”.
Kris was (and is) awesome – (Kristin Kay Richardson, where the hell are you?) – which is why we dared hold our noses and venture into the belly of the beast. Once we got to her dorm room, a bunch of other Dook students dropped by, because that’s what you do when foreign objects appear on your hallway.
There were about 10 folks in there, including Kris’ suitemate, who liked to appear smart by masking her half-baked notions with a lot of belligerent dialogue. After a lengthy philippic about how awful dating in college can be, I could see Jon getting restless.
“The problem is,” she went on, “All guys under 21 are still total mama’s boys. They have no original thoughts, and are just waiting for their mom to come clean their room.”
Both of us having gone through our parents’ divorces – mine mere weeks before – Jon and I found that line of reasoning sort of stupid and reductionist.
“Not all guys are like that,” I said, “We’re not all infantile.”
She went on undeterred. “Show me one. I’m convinced that there is nobody worth dating for another three years.”
Then Jon announced, “That’s because you go to school with 10,000 assholes.”
Now, if you know Jon, you know he doesn’t say things quietly. This might as well have been on the public address system. Being still all Holden Caulfield and shy, I covered my open mouth with my sweater, eyes wide in delight. I can’t TELL you how inappropriate this was in a room full of Dookies in 1986.
The girl sputtered “I… I can’t believe you would label… I think you owe us all an apology…” and Jon said something like, “Well, I’ll apologize if you want me to, but…” and the next thing I knew, we were all being shuffled off to the parking lot so we could escape down 15-501 back to safety.
I may have written that article four years later – hell, I might’ve also tried chewing tobacco for the first time in Durham and thrown up all over the Dook Student Union in 1993 (true), but Jon laid it out there first. He did it when we were skinny and outnumbered, and sitting on the enemy’s bed, and for that, I’ll always be grateful.
a windy farmscape with The Budster, Jon, and yours truly, June 1986 near Henryville, Quebec